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Full text of "Argus"


NORTHWESTERN STATE 

UNIVERSITY 



J&m 




RECEIVED 
SERIALS OIVISJO 

MAY i C 197 9 

NORTHWESTERN STATE UNIVERSil 
WATSON LIBRARY 



~m 









On Making A Cover ... 



It's spring and Jack Baker's cover 
typifies the carefreeness of this season, 
conjuring up the childlike quality of 
Cummings' "chanson innocente." Os- 
tensibly, the Argus myth is treated 
lightly in the "eye-kites," but under- 
lying the lightness is the suggestion 
that, just as Argus experienced a 
change both rich and strange, spring i<= 
inherently a time of creative transfor- 
mation. 



AHLiUb 



VOLUME 3, NUMBER 2 SPRING 1979 






Jackie Dees 


4 


Freudian Slip 


Joyce Deason 


5 


Photograph 


Cecil E. Burns 




Temple Hay 


Mark Middlebrooks 


6 


Of Dusk 


Billy Ray Gingles 




nocturnal 


Mark Middlebrooks 




Night Vision 


Tim Westmoreland 


7 


Photograph 


Billy Ray Gingles 




sequel 


Elaine Bastedo 


8 


"Katherine" 


Marjory Todtenbier 


9 


Probably Incurable 


Billy Ray Gingles 


10 


on this night 


Mark Middlebrooks 




Winter 


Cecil E. Burns 


11 


"Forest Lady" 


Jack W. Baker 


12 


"Bulow Grappe" 


Sondra Smith 


13 


I Knew Her Once 


Allen M. Ford 




Lapses 


Tim Westmoreland 


14 


Photograph 


Cindy Totten 


15 


Metaphor Walk 


Cecil E. Burns 




Alas, My Tortoise 


Billy Ray Gingles 


16 


returning 


Cecil E. Burns 




"Angela" 


Cecil E. Burns 


17 


Mystery 


Jim Allen 




Waking Militant 


Sonya Rozeman 


18 


Show 


Jim Allen 




Upstaged 


Mark Middlebrooks 


19 


A Plain Girl 



ARGUS is a multi-media magazine published by the Department of Languages at Northwestern State University, 
Natchitoches, Louisiana. Copies are free to full time students, $1.50 to all others. 

Our sincere thanks and appreciation to Hazel Mayfield and Debbie Moreau of Mayfield Printing and Office 
Equipment, Natchitoches, for their patience and cooperation in typesetting the copy. We would also like to gratefully 
acknowledge Mr. J. C. Carlin, Mr. Gary Spangler, and the employees of Louisiana Offset Printers, Inc., of Alexandria for 
their patience and assistance in publishing this magazine. The ARGUS staff is responsible for the layout. Comments or 
suggestions may be sent to the Department of Languages in care of the editor. 

A special note of thanks goes to Dr. James Bartholomew, Mrs. Ann Black, Dr. E. Robert Black, Dr. Sara Burroughs, 
and Mr. Bill Robert for their continued support and encouragement. For their assistance is the selection of the prose, our 
gratitude goes to the Nu Iota Chapter of Sigma Tau Delta. 



ARGUS ARGUS ARGUS ARGUS ARGUS ARGUS ARGUS ARGUS ARGUS ARGUS ARGUS 


Denise Duvall 


20 


A Single Drop 


Billy Ray Gingles 




driving late along the cane river 


Allen M. Ford 




In Silence 


Sonya Rozeman 




Haven 


J oyce Deason 


21 


Photograph 


Cindy Totten 


22 


Hey, Baby, Sky's on Fire 


Colleen Claire Cook 


24 


"Room 211, West Caddo Hall" 


Darrell Barlow 


25 


"Still Life" 


Billy Ray Gingles 


26 


"Drawing" 


J im Allen 


27 


Emptying Nets 


Darrell Barlow 


28 


"Landscape" 


Diane Von Behren 


29 


A Ring for a Nickel 


Darrell Barlow 


32 


"The Fool Pleas for a Second Chance" 


Diane Von Behren 


33 


Survival of the Fattest 


Angela Meeks 
Billy Ray Gingles 




If You Will, Please, Lord 


34 


"Relative Question No. 3" 


Sonya Rozeman 


35 


The Arrival 


Allen M. Ford 


39 


Noble deQue 


Jim Allen 


40 


Blessed Incubus 


Billy Ray Gingles 


41 


"Sampler No. 4 (Switch)" 


Paul Kosten 


42 


Unemployment 


Jackie Dees 


43 


Opalescent Arch 


Jamie Sanders 




Mr. Music's Hidden Thoughts 


Soo Dho Nym 


44 


Buddies 


Joyce Deason 


52 


Photograph 


Sonya Rozeman 


53 


An Elegy 


Allen M. Ford 


57 


Missive 


Joyce Deason 




Photograph 


Jim Allen 


58 


The Sterile 


Cecil E. Burns 


59 


"Earth" 


Illustrations 


by Cecil E. Burns 


Student Advisor Editor In Chief Faculty Advisor 


ALLEN M. FORD CINDY JO TOTTEN DR. CHRISTINE PICKERING 


Note Fa.M979 Deadlines Editorial Staff fni NORTHWESTERN STATE 

•OETRY 14 September CECIL E.BURNS MM UNIVERSITY 


'ROSE 21 September BILLY RAY GINGLES OF T OT TT^T Zi KT A 
,RT & PHOTOGRAPHY 12 October SONYA ROZEMAN W1 ■«-«^'U101rilNr\ 



Freudian Slip 

The skeletons in your closet 

stuck their boney hands 

through the crack of the door 
When you accidentally 

opened it, 

today, 

during tea with the girls. 
They saw 

the bleached-white knuckles 

and the dusty cobwebs 

draped across the wrists. 
And even though 

you slammed it back quickly 

with a clever word about 

'weren't we crazy!' 
A finger got caught 

in the rusty hinges 

and snapped to the floor. 
Mrs. Jones slipped it 

into her purse 

when you turned your back, 
And by noon tomorrow, 

everyone in town will have seen it. 

Jackie Dees 



ARGUS 4 




Temple Hay 

Our voices rustled 

like warm, dry straw 

in the mow, 

when we stored away 

for all generations 

what we know. 

A knowing 

that would 

drop 

gently 

later, 

trailing fragrant dust 

dust just 

did not last, 

but, 
catching fire, 

lit up the night. 

It warmed us 

and dried our tears, 

and we remembered; 

The grass 

grows fresh 

in the sunny spring, 

and lasts till winter, 

when it is right 

for everything 

to die, 

anyway. 



JOYCE DEASON 

Photograph 



Cec/7 E. Burns 



ARCUS5 



OF DUSK 



How calm and distinguished the beauty 

The twilight love 

Magic intertwined of strength 

Of daylight prowess 

With wanton spell of feline night 

Ebony rich, 

Limbs naked, winter full 

Hues thick of distant forest 

Creep along horizon arcane 

And lurefairies- 

Behind tiny golden moonlit glades; 

Thick with cold the echo 

Hollow chirp 

Heavens cover the night, 

Dark soft glow 

Lull of violet 

Sifting motionlessly as dew, 

Eve will soon bloom 

As womanhood- 

As night. 



nocturnal 

the night is serene, 
our feet hang over the 
pier's edge, we talk quietly. 

you giggle softly on my arm, 
our hands sticking together 
in the summer night. 

ducks glide through reflections, 
i am happy, the full moon 
dancing in the black water. 

Billy Ray Gingles 



Mark Mlddlebrooks 



NIGHT VISION 

Pace softly, lovingly step by step 
Lead a quiet path into the settling mist 
Deep within the crying of the night. 

Sole stone and bare tree tarry shadowed cold by pale moonlight 
The lady white casts shadows upon the bed of men, 
Deep within the weeping of the night. 

Slowly the saunter draws toward dawn, 

Lone shade mutely flits the other way 

Deep within the muffled dreams of the night. 

Deep within the horrible laughter of the night. 
Mark Mlddlebrooks 



ARGUS 6 










TIM WESTMORELAND 
Photograph 
124Yashica, 120 Film 



sequel 

the moon 

is not quite full 

but it 

feels that way 

watching it 
through your hair 

Billy Ray Cingles 



ARGUS 7 


















K 




~ 



■ 






■ 




•f 








. ' ~* * 








- 



4*4 



f 







i 









ELAINE BASTEDO 
"Katherine'* 
Charcoal 
30.5cm x 22. Hem 






Probably Incurable 



Marjory Todtenbier 



II like to write. I am a penwoman. The 
ildictionary defines me "a writer." 
More specifically, I am a graphomaniac and 
probably incurable. 

Old Miss Crunkenmeier started me on 
this path way back in the first grade. She 
and her ominous fifteen-inch ruler teamed 
up to teach us the formidable art of 
penmanship. We learned to write in much 
the same manner that an infantryman 
learns to dodge bullets. A few of us more 
defiant ones never learned to stop writing. 

I didn't even quit after that one-man 
assignment in the fifth grade- "I will not 
chew gum in class." - to be written on the 
blackboard one hundred times. The chalk, 
student-trained, screetched delightfully 
every second or third sentence. The 
teacher was almost a basket-case when I 
finished. 

Probably the junior high girls' Dean 
recommended that I participate in the 
program for would-be journalists. Who 
could know better than she my affinity for 
writing? She reserved one whole desk 
drawer tor my personal notes that had been 
malevolently intercepted by perspicacious 
instructors before they reached their 
intended recipients. I wonder how she 
spent the long, boring days after she 
channeled my literary talents into jour- 
nalism, and out of note writing. 

One day, in a flash of the purest 
brilliance, I penned a phrase so clever that 
it won me the coveted position of Jr. News 
Reporter. (Unfortunately that clever phrase 
rests somewhere beyond my memory, but I 
can assure you it was really grand.) In three 
years, I worked my way up to News Editor 
of the school paper, a title which afforded 
some status, but more importantly gave me 
free license to roam the halls during 
homeroom and first period. 



College composition courses weren't too 
bad, but the dutiful weekly letters back 
home got pretty dull until the one I 
composed the evening of the day I received 
a typhoid inoculation. Now, that was a 
letter- a real triumph of humor, according 
to my family. I have no idea what I wrote as 
I was in a mild typhoid delirium. But it had 
to be very special as the folks still suggest 
(subtly) now and then that perhaps I would 
find another typhoid shot beneficial. 

My correspondence turned to tragedy on 
the occasion when I penciled out two letters 
at one sitting and reversed the mailing 
envelopes. The "Dear John" letter con- 
founded my folks temporarily until my 
brothers reacted like hysterical monsters. 
And poor "Dear John" decided not to 
alleviate my current cash shortage. He, in 
fact, decided never to speak to me again. I 
am today probably the most careful letter 
addressor and envelope stuffer in the 
world. 

It's a bit difficult to comprehend why 
these negative experiences would lead to 
graphomania, so I must conclude that this 
mania for writing is addictive. Even now 
I'm formulating a plan to organize a 
"Writer's Anonymous" group with a 
format similar to AA. 

I'll start on that project first thing after I 
type this P.T.A. story for the newspaper, a 
letter to my Congressman, as well as to a 
certain radical magazine editor, letters to 
the folks and a dozen or so old friends, a 
few poems seeking release from a preg- 
nant mind, a short article about paper 
waste, a note to the milkman, and a memo 
to the kids suggesting that they return my 
pencils and fix their own dinner because 
"I'm busy writing." 



ARGUS 9 



on this night 

we glide in from the evening 
feather words follow us leaving 
the privacy of the car 
strolling towards a last kiss 

this feels real enough 
your small waist in my hand 
our shadows advancing 
under the guard of light globes 

near the steps some tall bushes 
where your soft eyes spur 
desires that transgress 
the midnight embrace 

later in a still room 
my head fixed in a pillow 
i drift inward remembering 
your fingers plowing my hair 

Billy Ray Gingles 



CECIL E. BURNS 
"Forest Lady" 
Acrylic 
86.6 cm x 56 cm 



WINTER 

Winter has come and drawn lies the town side; 

Love fallen from heaven 

Now melts along quiet meadow roads. 

The distant city 

It's rumbling bustling 

Now but an insignificant image 

On the dark of eyes. 

Cutting and sere 

Lie the dormant mounds 

Past froze with love. 

Anger of heart 

Concealed warm against the frozen midday. 

Mute a lone gull reflects; 

A stark iced stare 

From lake to sky. 

The frolic has past 

The voices now hollow, 

And I embrace a love 

That admits no season. 

Mark Middlebrooks 



ARGUS 10 




Sf^e 






... 







I Knew Her Once 

I knew her once. 

I felt her warmth and 

saw her glow on a 

wintry day, 
And I shed my outer cloak 

because her spirit warmed 

me. 
I knew her once. 
I needed her wisdom and 

she gave me the gift 

of listening, 
And I felt my gloom lift 

like a summer cloud 

and suddenly I could 

laugh again. 
I knew her once. 
And knowing her has brought 

me into a special 

place of bright flowers, 

silk scarves and 

precious possessions— 
Which now, I own. 

Sondra Smith 



JACK W. BAKER 
"Bulow Grappe" 
Photograph, 35 mm Vivitar 
Color negative 
F4. 100/sec 



Lapses 

it's forgotten. 

like yesterday's thoughts 

i don't remember 

the time, the time, the time, 
the son is lost in clouds 

of doubts 
i don't remember 

her lace and nails 
chipped and torn 
like the dazed 

my thoughts are vanquished, 
in the morning chill i wake 

and roll 

my mind 
like bedspreads blue 

blanket 
stockings running 

all the way 
screaming 
I Don't Remember, 

memories black and back 
her back was smooth 

like her throat 
i choked 

and left the thought 
the life 

i'm dreaming 
trembling 
it's forgotten. 

you've been drinking 
thirsting in guilt 

and shame you don't 
remember 
it's forgotten. 



Allen M. Ford 



ARCUS 13 





TIM WESTMORELAND 

Photograph 

124 Yashica 120 Film 



ARGUS 14 









METAPHOR WALK 

I have to exercise my metaphors. 

They leave stuffy spaces for roomier places of white air. 

They stroll on thin, vein-blue streets and roll, 

Birds dust-bathing, in red-lined alleys of despair. 



I parade them in public, knowing 
Bruiseable insides 
Through transparent outsides 
Are showing. 

When I muzzle my metaphors, they froth 
Needle teeth nip at my pen in rage. 
I sit, having withdrawal from ink, 
Poetry pooling on the page. 
Molten poetry cooling on the page. 

Cindy Totten 



Alas, My Tortoise 

Alas, 

my tortoise ran away, 

straining, neck straining 

in a hundred year race, 

slowly; 

through the grass. 

Broken glass 

left scattered, 

matters some, 

but not so much 

as my tortoise 

ran away, alas, 

my tortoise ran away. 

Perhaps 

I will find him 

later 

in some cloud, 

forming briefly 

between the 

duck and the old man laughing 



Cec/7 E. Burns 



ARCUS 15 






t 



returning 

through my open window i see clearly 
the full moon in the distance 
veiled like a virgin bride 

was it just the last one 
that danced on quiet ripples 
celebrating our caress 

you have changed 

you are not the woman i held 

you might as well orbit the earth too 

i drive back to my room knowing 
the future has changed and i 
am returning to possibilities 



1 




CECILS. BURNS 

"Angela" 

Photograph, 35 mm 

50 mm lens, F2.8, 500/sec. 



Billy Ray C/ng/es 
ARCUS 76 



Mvsterv 



J Your heart 

was too hard, 

and small, 

like a wild cherry. 

Compassion. 

Slender hair, 

fugitive thread, 

clings to my hand. 

How could it 

have gotten 

there? 
» I'm sure I 
1 never managed 
: to touch you. 

Cecil E. Burns 



WAKING MILITANT 

I uncovered a gem 

Sparkling as fresh and as unclouded 

as a clot of blood 

from a pigeon's throat 

Exposed to a spear of heat 

tiny wings emerge glistening 

in their wet sheath 

fluttering -fainting 

And then blue- red 

streaks as the clot warmed, 

rose and fell absorbing 

new dampness 

It swayed on the side of the desk 

and did not fall instead- 

into the typing roller 

and red the page 



Clotted blood 

dissolves itself 

into a mass of white 

for protection 

against self, against others, 

against the very thing it would be 

if it knew its kind 

or its own mind 

I eat my heart like an old valentine 

lace around the edge 

lace around the wound 

lace crawling down my throat dragging 

the last trace of memory 

into a pool of acid 

Jim Allen 



ARGUS 17 



Show 

I am a dancer, 

Moving in measured rhythm 

Across elevated stages. 

Audiences watch from 

Darkened recesses; 

Hiding and nodding and smiling. 

Paint obscures 
My face, 

My costumes boast 
Of lace. 

Music is provided 
By the ochestra of 
Popular demand, 

Playing out of tune. 
Sonya Rozeman 



Upstaged 

You strip yourself 
when you don't have to 
Naked 

to the bone flesh separating 
and yielding falling off- 
nothing by vulnerable 
like a chicken without feathers 
you pluck away 
just to feel yourself sting 

All the while I'm collecting 

feathers, stuffing them 

like a miser 

into a gunny sack 

feeling guilty but none 

the less human 

You stand in the night 

smooth as silk 

As I skulk home with 

my pillow 

To dream of angels. 

Jim Allen 



ARCUS 18 



A PLAIN GIRL 

A plain girl you watched me upon stage 

And told me of your name. 

Frail your face, your frame, your mind, 

Thick red your lids quiver dark 

Your eyes dart 

In answer to your question. 

Whether to burst fourth with a laugh 

And toss back your head 

Or stare at me with panic and ask me 

Your mind. 

This you would ponder 

And did. 



A fairy at heart, a thin sequin gown 

And five point star upon magic wand. 

You wander aimless through the costumed crowd 

In search. 

But one midday you found your heart 

In a dream, 

And never ventured from that sleep. 

Oh! the twitching drooling fairy- 
Monster why did not I return with you 
To the ink murk of the deep? 
Oh my Shalott, and enchantful far night queen, 
My morn daisy 
You have refracted the colors 
Of thought. 

Your rainbow is dripping 
And I shall weep 
As a summer love shower for your spirit. 

Mark Middlebrooks 



ARCUS19 



A SINGLE DROP 

a single drop 

cast out 

by its maternal protector 

races through life 

to meet 
an untimely end 
on the sidewalk. 



driving late along the cane river 

there are no stars awake to see 
my headlights flood the narrow 
road winding through dark fields 

nashville fades in and out 
like waves up and back 
from wet sand 



Denise Duvall 



i am miles from my bed 
passing a small shack 
with windows still amber 



i cross a small bridge 
inthis uncertain night 
wondering about you 



In Silence 



Billy Ray Gingles 



my tongue you mind, 

you laugh, 

And cry And cry And cry. 

pencil lead 

two edges drawn and 

cornered beyond my tongue 

where tender heart means 

And passive strokes strain sure 

Sure sure never never sure. 

your laughter dies in silence, 

cries behind the echo. 

Allen M. Ford 



Haven 

August nights bathed in soft words 
That hold us with sentimental embraces. 
We exist in a falling-star sky 
Dodging echoes of journeys past, 
Balancing on temporary constellations, 
Looking for shelter through reassurances 
We take refuge in exchanged hearts. 



ARGUS 20 



Sonya Rozeman 




JOYCE DEASON 
Photograph 



ARGUS 21 



Hey, Baby, Sky's On Fire 



Cindy Jotten 



a 



good friend and I finished play 
rehearsals one night and could not face 
going back to our dorms to homework and 
four nubbly walls, so we went out for a cup 
of coffee. We were sitting in a restaurant, 
still in stage makeup, engrossed in 
animated conversation, when a guy sat 
down in the booth next to us and tuned all 
his senses expectantly in our direction. He 
had entered into our personal space, so we 
looked at him, feeling awkward and letting 
our words fade. He said, "Hi, I was just 
trying to find a way to introduce myself. I 
wonder how Burt Reynolds would go about 
walking up to two ladies and introducing 
himself." My friend said, "He wouldn't ." 
The guy then asked if he had embarrassed 
us, saying that he just wanted somebody to 
talk to. The old pity-party ploy. It didn't 
work. We asked him to please leave, 
feeling that it was just tough if he was hurt 
because we rejected him. 

Sound cruel? Heartless? Why not listen 
to the poor guy? All he wanted was 
someone to listen ... 

My friend and I puzzled about the reason 
the guy chose to bother us. We decided 
that if we had been looking around the 
room, primping, or batting our mascaraed 
eyes at the guy, we would have deserved 
the intrusion. As it was, we had been too 
interested in our conversation to even 
notice the other people in the restaurant 

This is just one of many occasions when I 
have been bothered while minding my own 
business. I was out one night for nine whole 



minutes (I timed it) and was trudging home 
when a jeep slowed near me. Two guys 
asked me if I needed a ride; I politely said 
no. "Oh, come on," they argued, "we're 
cool." I again said no and, to show me just 
how cool they were, they peeled out, 
spewing rocks on me. When the dust 
settled, I muttered, "Not cool enough," 
and, covered with road film, wearily went 
home. Another day I was walking home 
when a truck breezed by and someone 
yelled, "Hey, baby, wanna get lucky?" I 
remained mum (unable to cleverly retort 
something) and unlucky. One time, I was 
doing an art assignment by the lake, sitting 
away from the road behind a tree on a hill 
that jutted out over the water. I presently 
heard persistent honking, and when I 
peered around my tree, there was a carload 
of people catcalling and jeering at me. 

I was beginning to get a complex, not to 
mention a little paranoid. 

I have been trying to understand what 
prompts these people to intrude on my 
privacy, to hubba-hubba in my direction, to 
proposition me from the safety of their 
passing vehicles. Do I just happen upon 
lonely lechers cruising around and looking 
for action? Or is it me? Was I flirting? No, 
batting my nonexisting eyelashes requires 
too much coordination and, besides, it 
gives me a headache. Being sexy? No, I 
wasn't baring my sparse breasts in public 
or wearing revealing clothing— most of the 
time I was in baggy overalls, barely 
recognizable as female. Giving come-hither 



ARC US 22 



looks? No, I would hardly call staring 
intently at the ground before me (so that I 
don't trip on my shoelaces) come-hithery. 
And my hair was usually hanging in my 
face, blocking side vision, so that I 
resembled a horse with blinders on, 
plowing a field. My walk tempting? No, I 
tended to move along at an unenticing 
plod. 

Perhaps I was bothered because I was 
always alone or with another girl, not with 
the safety-in-numbers of a group. I seemed 
more vulnerable — yes, an easy target, a 
pedestrian duck at which to fling com- 
ments. And the hackneyed phrase "asking 
for it" came to mind, for what was I, a 
female, doing walking alone (the audacity!) 
to the corner store or sitting with another 
lone (the horror of it all!) female in a 
restaurant? Yes, I'm sure I was asking for 
it, just begging to be bothered. In 
freshman-folly days, I was thrilled to be 
whistled at or honked at; now I just mutter, 
"Oh, don't talk to me if you don't know 
me." 

So I decided that if all these interlopers 
and pests had the right to bother me, I had 
the right to be nasty in return. Perhaps if I 
start wearing a T-shirt with "Antisocial" or 
"Beware — Rabid Dog" on it ... 

I have tried to think of ways to stop these 
unwelcome comments. To totally avoid 
them, I could become a hermit and only 
come out late at night. But then I would 
have to decide whether to walk in the 
lighted sections where the maniacs can see 
me or in the dark places where the maniacs 
are. I could try revenge— carrying a gun, 
but I'd probably shoot myself, giving the 
maniacs even more of an advantage. 

I shall probably continue to do what I do 
now, playing resignedly deaf and mute. I 
can never seem to come up with cutting 
answers to these one-liners; the speakers 
always have a get-away car and I'm not 
brave enough to say anything until they are 



out of earshot. And I am left, looking after 
them and wondering why, repeating a line 
of song out of context, "Hey, baby, sky's on 
fire. I'm dyin', ain't I? ...but not for you 




JCC<' -" '. ' ■*• '. «v 



ARGUS 23 




//// 




ARC US 24 




DARRELL BARLOW 
Still Life 
Pencil 
45.6 cm x 61 cm 



COLLEEN CLAIRE COOK 

'Room 211, West Caddo Hall" 

Photograph 

Minolta SRT-201, 35 mm 



ARCUS25 






fj f 



t 



^r 








EMPTYING NETS 

I grew in the arms 

of a candle 

with the flexibility running 

underneath like the hidden 

supports of a sea bridge 

As the wax dripped 

I formed the words in 

A secret s pattern stretching 

down the table dangling like 

a hook without barbs 

I cast myself upon 

white linen and laughed 

at the lack of blood 

that spilled from the 

creatures below 

in search of 

lost men. 

Jim Allen 



Bl ,Y RAY GINGLES 
"Drawing" 
Pencil 45.6 cm x 61 cm 



ARCUS27 




■ B 



DARRELL BARLOW 
"Landscape" 
Charcoal 
45.6 cm x 61 cm 



ARGUS 28 



A Ring For A Nickel 



Diane Von Behren 



You know, I don't really want to be your 
__Jfriend, Jaime, but Mom says you don't 
understand that, do you?" Jaime smiled at 
me and rocked back and forth snuggling his 
new puppy. He was just the right size and 
height for his age, which was the same as 
mine, 7. He, his mother and father lived in 
the big house down the street from us, but 
Jaime wouldn't have cared where they 
lived. My mother wouldn't tell me what 
was wrong with Jaime, since I wouldn't 
understand, so she just told me I was going 
to be real nice to him and to watch him just 
as careful as I do my baby sister. 

We were upstairs in Jaime's room 
playing with his toys. He has lots of toys 
like I used to have when I was little but 
Mom threw them out cause I'm supposed 
to be a big boy in the second grade now. I 
could be out riding my new bike if I didn't 
have to play with Jaime. He doesn't have 
too many friends except the ones at the 
school he goes to. My mom and dad said 
it's for the retarded or something like that. 

"Hey, Jaime, let's go swimming," I said, 
swishing my hand around the ten gallon 
aquarium in his room. He knows when I do 
that it means swimming. He started 
hopping up and down and shouting, 
"Wimma, Wimma." I laughed and said 
"yeah, Wimma Jaime." His mother 
qfoesn't like for Jaime to go swimming 
because the last time he did, I ended up 
saving his life, but my mom taught me to 
swim real good so she says I can watch him 
by myself. 

Jaime can't swim too well either and I 
can't have too much fun when I have to 
watch him, so we only swam a little bit and 
I suggested we go for a walk. Jaime's 
favorite place is the highway. We always sit 
on our tree stump and watch all the cars go 
by. He really likes the trucks. I tried to 
teach him to say truck, but he just jumps 



around and squeals alot instead. When- 
ever we see one I always say "That's a 
truck Jaime, a truck," and then I go into 
my funny CB conversation with myself and 
he laughs and laughs. Sometimes we walk 
on the path beside the highway. One time 
Jaime's father saw us and yelled at me to 
hold his hand real tight. We don't walk on 
the path much now, cause seven year old 
boys don't usually like to hold hands very 
much. 

Jaime and I have been real good friends 
for about a month now. At first I hated him, 
cause he was such a baby, but whenever I 
tell him a secret he'll never tell anybody 
else since he can't talk too good. I always 
point out the pretty girls in my school to 
him but he just smiles and bounces his 
little rubber ball up and down. My mom 
says he shouldn't really be able to bounce 
that ball, being the way he is and all, but I 
helped teach him, and he likes it a lot. 

Jaime's favorite food is ice cream. I 
bought him some with my birthday money 
one day, you know the kind you get in a 
dish with a little plastic spoon, and he 
made such a mess with it that I only get him 
the kind in a cone with one tiny scoop of ice 
cream inside. Sometimes we talk Mr. 
Miller, he's the owner of the store, into 
giving us some for free. Jaime always likes 
it when we get ice cream. He smiles and 
laughs while he eats it and when we get 
home he always tries to tell his mother 
what we had. 

One day when my baby sister was 
screaming real loud and Mom was walking 
her back and forth across the room 
mumbling something to her, my dad 
leaned down and said, "How'd you like to 
go camping tomorrow, son?" 

"Oh, could we? Oh Boy!!!" I yelled as I 
skipped around the room. 

"We sure can," he said laughing. "Say, 
we can take Jaime along too. I'll bet he's 
never gone camping before." He thought it 
was a real good idea. I stopped in the 
middle of a skip. 

"Aw, Dad, do we have to?" I remem- 
bered the time he almost drowned in his 
own swimming pool. I noticed the look on 
my mother's face and added, "I mean, is it 



ARGUS 29 



run o d 'nugou c go dp arm ndDODaapppatiga ddddddd 



safe? You know, he might get hurt since he 
doesn't know any better." Neither of them 
said another word, but the next morning 
Dad and I were up bright and early with all 
kinds of tents and stuff all ready to go. We 
picked up Jaime, and his mother looked 
kind of worried but his dad kept saying it 
was all right. Jaime must have said bye 
about 17 times. He probably thought he 
was saying something really important, but 
I was the only one who noticed it and that's 
because ten of those times were in my ear. 

The first thing we did when we got there 
was get fire wood. Since I did all the 
finding, I made Jaime carry it. After I had 
loaded a big armful for him, he thought 
that it was a game and threw them all up 
into the air and laughed. It took me twenty 
minutes to teach him that we were just 
carrying the wood for a fire. We had fun 
roasting hotdogs, and Jaime got his 
burned, but he liked them better that way 
and when we cooked him one right, he 
wouldn't eat it. When we were cleaning up 
from lunch I knew my dad was going to say 
fishing next. When he did, Jaime headed 
for the lake by himself. Dad and I looked at 
each other wondering if he had understood. 
Dad shook his head and we followed Jaime 
to the lake. 

He already had his shoes and socks off 
when we got there. I taught him that you 



are supposed to do that before you go in. 
Dad said I should let him play, and we 
baited our lines. After we'd been there 
awhile, Jaime discovered that we weren't 
swimming and got out of the water. Dad 
and I tried to teach him how to cast off and 
all, but he couldn't do it right so we let him 
play in the bucket of worms. 

Just when we had caught enough fish, 
we heard a loud crash. I started running for 
the tents. When I got there, there was 
Jaime rolling around between the lanterns, 
pillows, tackleboxes and paper plates, just 
having himself a real good time. Since the 
camping trip seemed to be a disaster, Dad 
decided we'd go home early, and I sure was 
glad of that. Jaime fell asleep on the way 
home and he started talking in his sleep. 
First it was real fast like everybody does; 
then he sounded like he was sounding out 
words like I did when I learned how to read. 
When he woke up I showed him some more 
trucks. "There's three trucks Jaime," I 
held up three fingers. He held up three 
fingers after awhile but he couldn't say 
truck. Dad clapped and told him he was 
right, that that was three fingers. 

The other day when we went window 
shopping, we stopped at the ice cream 
store and we each got a free ice cream. On 
the way I saw a nickel on the floor and put it 
in my pocket. When we passed the 



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ARGUS 30 




utrm DdDaptiEanaDDPDDDGODg naanOQDaDpDgQuan^ 



qQPUDDDDPDDDDD D D Dda n Q Q P Q DDDD O D OPd p D q DP Dl 




supermarket I went to the gum machine 
and told Jaime I was getting some gum. 
Instead of our five pieces of gum, all I got 
was one of those funny looking plastic 
rings. "Another stupid ring." I mumbled 
and I threw it down on the sidewalk. Jaime 
turned around and picked it up. He stared 
at it and smiled at me real big. "That's a 
ring for my friend, Jaime, right?" I said, 
smiling back. He nodded his head, and I 
didn't even mind when he took my hand 
and we walked on down the street together. 
My mother gave me a big hug and said 
she was proud of me. I must have looked at 
her funny because she explained about 
Jaime's ring and said that his mother said 
he really loved that ring, almost more than 
his puppy. She said he slept with it on 
even. I thought it was kind of funny for a 
kid to like a stupid bubble gum machine 
ring more than his own puppy. 

I was almost turning eight, and Jaime 
wasn't too far behind me. I discovered 
something else I liked better than cars- 
model airplanes. My dad had just finished 
helping me build one and I wanted to show 
it off. I went over to J aime's house and told 
him about it and asked if he wanted to go 
for a walk. He grabbed up that old ball of 
his and headed for the door. 

We started walking towards the high- 



way. We sat on our stump and I flew my 
plane in circles around us and Jaime just 
laughed and turned his ring around and 
around on his finger. "Let's walk on the 
path." I jumped up from the stump and 
started walking. "We haven't done that in 
a long time." 

Jaime followed me and we walked 
awhile. I made airplane noises and he 
bounced his ball. All of a sudden his ring 
fell off his finger. He ran towards it but 
when he stooped over to pick it up, he 
kicked it accidentally. Jaime and I watched 
it roll onto the highway. Before I knew it 
Jaime was running after it again. I shouted 
to him as he ran after it, "No, Jaime, here 
comes a truck, Jaime come back!" but he 
was all the way out in the middle of the 
road going after his ring. I began running 
towards him shouting. I guess I must have 
quit shouting and given up because he 
turned to me, smiled and pointed a finger 
at the truck headed straight for him, and 
his last word, clear as any word ever said, 
was "Truck." 









gl DQapPDD D l nnDaQQ.DOUDJQQUQap[paDPM 



ARCUS31 




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4 >''' 



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ARGUS 32 



ARRELL BARLOW 

' The Fool Pleas For a Second Chance' 

Marker 

76.3 cm x 56 cm 



SURVIVAL OF THE FATTEST 

When I crave a gooev pizza, 

And I miss my seniorprom, 

I grab a box of chocolates 

And put my bright new tent dress on. 

When I should be chomping carrots, 
Celery and the like 
I'm eating double layer cakes 
And getting flats on my new bike. 

The truth of the whole matter is 
I'm not that overweight 
Kingsize clothes and queensize hose 
J ust seem to be my fate. 

Will I ever go to a football game 
Without hamburger, popcorn and coke 
How can I know what I really weigh 
When the scale seems to always be broke? 

A copy of "Weight Watchers" sits on my table 
To impress all of those who see 
Now if I can only follow its paths 
To a beautiful, skinnier me. 

Diane Von Behren 



If You Will, Please, Lord 

Dear Lord, thank you— 

First, for giving me the courage to take this test, 

Secondly, I'm asking you to help me do my best. 

Thirdly, I'm begging since I didn't study last night, 

Lord, could you please guide my pen to the answers that are right? 

Angela Meeks 



ARC US 33 







BILLY RAY GINGLES 

"Relative Question No. 3" 

Pencil 

45.6 cm x 61 cm 



ARCUS34 



The Arrival 



Sony a Rozeman 



EDWARD: The same thing. That's an 
interesting observation, Jean. Would you 
care to explain it? 

JEAN: You know exactly what I mean. 

EDWARD: (turning from window) All I 
know is that you get nervous every 
Thanksgiving and Christmas when our son 
comes home. 



THE CHARACTERS: 

Mr. Edward Scarbrough III 

wealthy executive, late 30's 
Mrs. Jean Scarbrough 
his wife, early 30's 

SCENE: The stage is set to resemble an 
airport waiting room, with a few chairs and 
a window. A small ugly Christmas tree is 
standing in a corner of the room. Mr. and 
Mrs. Scarbrough are at the airport, 
awaiting the arrival of their 12-year-old 
son, Eddie. It is a late flight. Mr. 
Scarbrough is standing by a window, 
nervously smoking. He alternates between 
talking to his wife and staring out the 
window. However, he never looks directly 
at her. Mrs. Scarbrough is seated away 
from the window. She is also smoking. 
Periodically, there is a faint sound of 
planes taking off and landing. 

Jean Scarbrough stubs out her cigarette. 
Edward is staring out the window. 

JEAN: I'm not sure this is a good idea, 
Edward. 

EDWARD: He's our son. 

J EAN: You know how these visits turn out. 

EDWARD: Why does it bother you so 
much, Jean? He only comes home twice a 
year. 



JEAN: (angrily) It doesn't bother me. He's 
my son. I just don't like the way we end up. 
Every time he comes home it's the same 
thing. 



J EAN: (lighting another cigarette) Nervous 
is not a very good description. I don't get 
nervous, just uncomfortable. 

EDWARD: (beginning to pace) I guess it 
never occurs to you that some mothers see 
their children every day. They even live in 
their parents' house. Not in some snobby 
boarding school up east. 

J EAN: I was only thinking of his education. 

EDWARD: That's an excuse, Jean, and 
you know it. 

JEAN: We see him twice a year, 
Thanksgiving and Christmas. 

EDWARD: (in an even tone) Twice a year. 
Twice a year we sit in this airport and wait 
on a little boy. Our son. A little boy that we 
hardly know. One who visits in our house 
for a couple of weeks. He'll grow up into a 
man, and we'll never know him. That's a 
hell of a note. A part of us, and we don't 
even know what kind of books he reads, (he 
turns back to the window) 

JEAN: It was your decision, too, to send 
him away. 

EDWARD: I agreed with you then. The 
schools were bad, and we weren't getting 
along. I thought it would be better than 
listening to us fight. 

JEAN: He seemed happy about it, even 
excited. 

EDWARD: He was eight years old. If we 
had asked him to run off with gypsies, he 

ARCUS35 



would have. We were perfect to him. 

J EAN: (softly) I used to be perfect to you. 

EDWARD: What? 

JEAN: Nothing. 

EDWARD: I still don't understand why it is 
such a huge strain on you, having him 
visit 

JEAN: (shifting uncomfortably) I never 
know what to do. I'm just not used to being 
a mother. 

EDWARD: You were never used to it. 

JEAN: Who wanted the baby? 

EDWARD: (turning) I thought children 
would be good for you. You seemed 
restless. You needed a commitment 

JEAN: You were away a lot. All I had was 
time, but I needed a husband, not a baby. 

EDWARD: You also needed the house, and 
the car, and it took money. I was thinking of 
you. 

JEAN: (her voice rises) You know I loved 
him, Edward. The day he was born he 
fought so hard. I was proud of him. I was 
sick every day that I carried him, but you 
wanted a child, and I loved you. 

EDWARD: We needed him. He was alive 
and new, and he needed us. It gave us 
something together. Don't you see that? 
Children give people something together. If 
we weren't sure that we had each other, we 
had Eddie. 

JEAN: It didn't help. We had him, but it 
didn't ever really change things. I wanted it 
to, really 

(Edward turns back to the window) 

JEAN I wanted to be close again 
A RC US 36 



EDWARD: (distantly) It was nice, that day I 
brought you home from the hospital. We 
were a real family, not just two people 
living in the same house. 

JEAN: (smiling sadly) Remember how he 
cried? We didn't know anything aboul 
taking care of a baby. 

EDWARD: (accusingly) We could have 
done all right, but you wanted a nurse. 

JEAN: I was so tired, Edward 

EDWARD: You were his mother 

(Jean sighs) 

JEAN: I couldn't handle it. 

EDWARD: You never wanted it. 

JEAN: I tried. 

EDWARD: Come on, Jean. You nevei 
wanted that baby. 

(The sound of a plane landing can be hearc 
backstage. Edward looks at his watch anc 
glances out of the window. ) 

JEAN: Is it him? 

EDWARD: Too early. He isn't supposed tc 
be here until 11:00. 

J EAN: (relieved) Oh. 

EDWARD: (turning) You never answerec 
me. Why don't you like him to visit? Yoi 
don't have to take care of him You onl\ 
have to talk to him twice a year. You senc 
him off to camp every summer, and keep 
him there until school starts again 

JEAN: Because he knows. 

EDWARD Knows what? 

JEAN: He knows that we sent him away. 






EDWARD: For heavens sake, Jean, he was 
only eight years old. That was four years 
ago. He can't possibly . . . 

JEAN: He can possibly, Edward. When he 
was home for Thanksgiving, he asked me 
why he was sent away. 

EDWARD: Why didn't you tell me? 

JEAN: You were in New York. That 
Hutchison deal, remember? 

EDWARD: Oh my Cod. 

JEAN: Edward, he wants to come home. 

EDWARD: (stunned) What did you tell 
him? 

(Jean's hands shake as she lights another 
cigarette.) 

JEAN: He remembered. 

EDWARD: He was too small. 

JEAN: No. I wish I could tell you that he 
was, but he remembered. 

EDWARD: What did he say? 

JEAN: He asked me how long he would 
have to stay at school. I asked him why, 
didn't he like it there? He said it was ok., 
but he was ready to come home. 

EDWARD: And you didn't tell me? 

JEAN: I was afraid. 

EDWARD: Of what? 

JEAN: That you would want him back. 

EDWARD: He's our son. 

JEAN: You're my husband. 

EDWARD: You said he remembered. 

JEAN: He said he heard us arguing. He 



heard me say it. 

EDWARD: What, Jean? 

JEAN: That it was his fault. His fault that 
you didn't love me. 

EDWARD: And he still wants to come 
home? 

JEAN: I told him that I didn't mean to say 
it. 

EDWARD: You meant it. 

) EAN: I was lonely. 

EDWARD: He's our son. 

JEAN: He was coming between us. 

EDWARD: He wasn't coming between us. 

JEAN: He was the only thing important to 
you. 

EDWARD: I wanted him to be important to 
you. No, I wanted him to be important to 
us. I wanted to be a family. 

JEAN: We were. For a while anyway. 

EDWARD: I would hardly call it that. You 
left Eddie with the nurse in the morning, 
and shopped all day. 

JEAN: He cried all of the time. 

EDWARD: You only saw him once a day, to 
kiss him good night. 

J EAN: She was a good nurse. He was taken 
care of. 

EDWARD: He needed his parents. 

JEAN: I needed you. 

EDWARD: Do you think it would have 
been different? Can't you see, it wasn't 
Eddie, it was us. We were coming between 

us 

A RCUS 37 



(There is a long pause. The last line hangs 
in the air between them. Edward turns 
again to stare out the window. Jean gets up, 
turns around and takes a few steps away 
from Edward. She turns to face him.) 

JEAN: (her voice rises) I wanted him, you 
know. I always did want him. Every time I 
held him, I wanted to do everything for 
him. But I was afraid. 

EDWARD: Of what, Jean? 

JEAN: (sighing) Of everything. Of getting 
old and dowdy. Of loving him too much. Of 
not loving him enough. Of becoming what I 
sawour friends become. Living for the boy, 
instead of ourselves. I could feel it inside. 
He mattered too much. 

EDWARD: I didn't know. You never told 
me. 

JEAN: (softly) I knew what you were 
thinking. 

EDWARD: And you let me go on. You 
should have told me. That was the 
problem. I resented you for not wanting the 
boy. Not wanting my son, our son. 

JEAN: It was better that way. Better than 
risking it. 

EDWARD: (shaking his head) You could 
have told me. 

JEAN: You could have seen. 

EDWARD: I guess I never looked close 
enough to see. I've always looked on the 
surfaces of things. The surfaces of people, 



mostly. You were my wife. I wanted a 
family. Everything the way it should be, on 
the surface. It looked acceptable. But I 
never tried to understand why it bothered 
you. You wouldn't conform. That was all I 
could see. 

(He finally looks at her) 

J EAN: I never thought I would tell you. 

EDWARD: (looking at the tree) It won't be 
easy. 

JEAN: I think I'm ready now. 

EDWARD: I guess Christmas is a good time 
to start. 

JEAN: I'm still afraid. 

EDWARD: I know, but this time I can see 
it. 

JEAN: He'll have to change schools. He 
might not want it anymore. 

EDWARD: We'll fix up his room. 

JEAN: No nurses. 

EDWARD: We won't need them. 

JEAN: It's time. 

(There is the sound of a plane landing. Jean 
rises and walks over to the window to stand 
by Edward.) 

EDWARD: (looking at his watch) It's time. 
CURTAIN 



ARGUS 38 



Noble de Que 

Louisiana trees 

down with rot and ivy 

shallow roots hide in slime 

snakes and mud stretch marks round 

damp trunks lean green shadows 

float stagnate still with life 

native moss is pretty 

wound brown and dry straining 

branches worn and broken 

bare reaching, pleading leaves falling 

limbs cling to sky unforgiving 

Allen M. Ford 



ARGUS 39 



BLESSED INCUBUS 



I feel the world through 

my skin 

like a giant stomach turned 

inside out 

inching my way over bumps 

and bruises 

sometimes finding a kernel 

of food under a stone 

I engulf myself- 

I am my own sand 

I am secreting against myself 

to create a black pearl 

Out of balance 

Out of necessity- 

I am traveling- 

to reason 

My soul is stone bruised 

deep inside tissues- 

where those things don't show 

without a mirror 

I know my fear 

it has married me in a 

ceremony of rings official. 

I am innocent- 

of marriage of thinking 

I am guilty- 

I am 



The wind knows it- 
the horse whose star I 
touched this afternoon 
knows 

I labor out of love 
I have so little that 
it hides under my feet- 
not even an impression 
when I stand with all 
my weight 

My skin feels separated- 
the insulation has been ripped 
from between the layers 
and I feel salt 
blowing against me 
burning its message until 
I lay pock marked 
with my disease 

I hide myself under a pillow 

and the pearl 

lies against my blood line 

like a marble 

threatening to roll like a clot 

into my breast 

I lay so still tonight 

that the pearl breaks 

my heart with its 

rolling 






and my eardrums 

shatter 

like stone against glass. 

Jim Allen 



ARGUS 40 









^0/ s' 




^ 



BILLY RAY GINGLES 

"Sampler No. 4 (Switch) 

Pencil 

45.6 cm x 61 cm 



ARGUS 41 



Unemployment 

left on line 

to fight the time 

whatever you say 

please come back today 

only to have backaches 

to spend money on. 

Unemployment is here to stay 

but you will have to pay 

to get a line A. 

Lines are there 

lines are thin 

whats your time it must stick, 

#5 wrong line 

spending hours standing erect 

only to find you're incorrect 

line 5 please step behind red line 

you must come back for more time. 

The sun is out 

the sun is in 

why are we all standing within? 

Hard times are here 

money is dear. 

I work the unemployment lines 

pay is good 

hours are good 

you could pass your life in loving care 

only to find that 

no one cares. 

Smoke is thick 

people are bricks 

living their life of glee 

but 

the money is free. 

Paul Kosten 



ARC US 42 



Mr. Music's Hidden Thoughts 

Sing you songs, Mr. Music 
It doesn't matter if you're off key 
J ust as long as you shake your butt 
Those little girls will scream. 

Wipe the sweat from off your brow 
Transfer it to your inner thigh 
Shove the microphone to your mouth 
And let out a heavy sigh . 

Open another button from your shirt 
You're getting very hot 
Now rub your hands across your chest 
Don't let those screams stop. 



The songs are over and your time is up 
Co home and sit in the dark 
Today was just another day 
Tomorrow you'll have to start. 

To sing your songs, Mr. Music 
It doesn't matter if you're off key 
J ust as long as you shake your butt 
Those little girls will scream. 

Jamie Sanders 



Opalescent Arch 

Opalescent arch 

stretching to reconcile the east with the west, 
You are a prismatic promise 

to a black and white world. 
Why do you hide the pot of gold? 



Jackie Dees 
ARGUS 43 



Buddies 

A ONE ACT PLAY 
Soo Dho Nym 



THE CHARACTERS: 

Randy, the upperclassman 

Brian, the freshman 

Lana, the willing, but ugly, coed 

Matt, a friend of Randy's 

Monica, an intimate friend of Randy's 

SCENE ONE: A dormitory room The walls 
are bare Suitcases are stacked near the 
beds. An alarm clock goes off on the 
nightstand. Brian gets up from the chair 
he's been sleeping in, turns on a lamp 
(stage lights up softly), and shuts the alarm 
off. He looks toward the bed where Randy 
is sleeping soundly, then goes to the phone 
and dials a number 

BRIAN: Hello. Is this the front desk? ... 
This is Brian Mathews, in 207. I think 
there's been some mix-up. I was supposed 
to have a private room and, well, some guy 
came in here last night and ..Yeah, I'll 
hold on ...(He looks toward the beds with 
discontent.) Hello. This is Brian Mathews, 
in 207. There's been a mix-up I'm 
supposed to have a private room, but this 
guy (pointing) came in last night and ... 
What? But this was supposed to be a 
private room. I made it clear that I wanted a 
private room on those forms that I filled out 
Yeah Yeah, you're sorry. (He hangs 
up the phone.) Bastard. 

Brian goes to the stereo, turns it up loud 
enough to wake Randy, and goes to the 
sink. He wets and lathers his face. Puzzled, 
Randy raises his head, looks around, and 
then covers his head with the pillow The 
telephone rings; Brian answers it 



BRIAN: Hello ... Who? ... Just a minute. 
(To Randy) Hey! (Randy raises his head 
from under the pillow.) Your name Randy? 

RANDY: That's it. 

BRIAN: Phone. 

Randy gets out of bed and goes to the 
phone in his boxer shorts. He notices 
shaving cream on the receiver and wipes it 
off. Brian has returned to the sink 

RANDY: Thanks. (Into the phone) Yeah ... 
Hey, what's up? ... I got in late last night. 
(To Brian) Hey! Could you turn that thing 
down a little bit? (Brian, grudgingly, goes 
to the stereo and complies ) What was 
that? ... Yeah ...I don't know yet ... Listen, 
I'll meet you over at the union about (to 
Brian) What time is it? 

BRIAN: (Looking at the clock) Seven-forty. 

RANDY: I'll meet you about eleven-thirty 
Yeah, right after I register ... Okay, see 
you then. (He hangs up, then looks over to 
Brian. Brian looks back ) (Awkwardly) 
How's it goin'? 

BRIAN: It isn't. 

Randy puts one of the suitcases on the bed 
and starts to collect his shower items Brian 
continues to shave. 

RANDY: (Matter-of-factly) Are you always 
such a bitch in the morning? 

BRIAN: Do you always come in drunk and 
hop in bed with strangers? 

RANDY: Only if I like them. Half that bed 
belongs to me. 

BRIAN: (After some thought) I'll bet you 
always shower in the morning. 

RANDY: So? 

BRIAN: Your sheets must get really rank 
after a few days. 

ARGUS 44 



Randy's reaction is he can top that. He 
moves toward the beds with curiosity. He 
pulls back the blanket and sheets to reveal 
the mattresses of the two beds that have 
been pushed together with the split 
running across instead of down the beds. 

RANDY: (Triumphantly) Hey! I like the 
way you've got these mattresses set up. I 
mean, I never would have thought of that. 
(He slides his hand along the crack as 
Brian, embarrassed, looks on.) Does it do 
the trick? 

BRIAN: You're a pervert. 

RANDY: Me? (He moves to exit for the 
showers.) I'm not the one who screws 
mattresses. (He exits, closing the door 
behind him.) 

BRIAN: Son of a bitch. (The phone rings. 
Brian cuts himself.) Shit. (He answers the 
phone.) Hello ... No, he's in the shower ... 
Yeah, I'll take the number. (No effort is 
made to write it down.) 5023 ... Right, bye. 
(After replacing the receiver Brian turns up 
the stereo. He then returns to the sink and 
relathers under his chin, and continues to 
shave.) 

Randy returns unshowered. He gets his 
shaving kit and toothbrush and starts for 
the sink. 

BRIAN: (leisurely rinsing.) That was quick. 
Touch and go, or did you forget your 
ducky? 

RANDY: (Ignoring the sarcasm, but losing 
patience) Neither. There was no hot water. 
You about finished there? 

BRIAN: (Icy) No. 

Randy looks at Brian, thinking. Making up 
his mind, he turns down the stereo and 
returns to the sink. 

RANDY: Look. (He sets his toiletries on the 
edge of the sink, then leans against the 
wall.) These kinds of mix-ups happen all 

ARGUS 45 



the time. No use getting bent out of shape 
about it. (He picks up his pants off the floor 
near the suitcases and looks for his shirt.) 
Let's go down to the desk and see what 
they can do about it. 

BRIAN: I already did. (Pause) I mean, I 
called. 

RANDY: What did they say? 

BRIAN: They said that there aren't any 
more private rooms left in this dorm. 

RANDY: That's tough. 

BRIAN: (Suggestively) There are some left 
in Norfolk Hall, though. 

RANDY: (Amenable) Good. It's not really 
bad over there. They do get a little wild 
sometimes. But, you can always study in 
the library. 

BRIAN: Me? 

RANDY: Yeah. 

BRIAN: But, I was here first. 

RANDY: Wrong. I was here first. You were 
here yesterday. I was here last semester. 

BRIAN: Oh ... I guess that means I'm the 
one who's got to move out. 

RANDY: Well, that seems to be your only 
alternative if you want to have a private 
room. You finished with the sink? 

BRIAN: Yeah. (He moves toward his 
suitcases and begins to dress.) I've never 
had a roommate and ... I'm kind of ... well 
... I don't know. Sort of . . . 

RANDY: Scared? 

BRIAN: No, not exactly. I'm just sort of ... 

RANDY: Apprehensive about it? 

BRIAN: Yeah, I guess that's it ... sort of 



apprehensive. 

RANDY: It's only natural. First time you 
been away from home, isn't it? (Brian 
nods.) Takes a while to adjust, but you'll do 
okay. 

BRIAN: Sure. But the roommate bit- I just 
don't want to get stuck for the semester 
with some self-righteous nut. 



RANDY: 
from. 



I know where you're coming 



BRIAN: And I'd need a place where I could 
study. 

RANDY: A freshman who studies? 

BRIAN: (Somewhat defensively) Yeah. 

RANDY: I'm just picking at you man. 
(Pause) Damn, you're awfully touchy about 
things. If you don't relax and lighten up 
you're going to have a hard time making 
friends. 

BRIAN: I don't know that I need to. My 
best friends are at home and I plan to 
commute on the weekends. 

RANDY: Oh yeah, the security of the 
umbilical. Well, just don't hold on too 
tight; you might choke yourself. 

BRIAN: (Adamantly) Yeah? Suppose you 
let me worry about that. I don't need 
anybody telling me how to run my life or 
trying to change things. I've gotta go. 
(Brian grabs a notebook and storms out of 
the room. Without stopping, he bumps into 
Matt who is just coming by to get Randy.) 

MATT: Hi. I've been waiting for your call. 
What's with him? 

RANDY: Freshman Simplex Number Two. 
You registered yet? 

MATT: Fixin' to now. (He looks around the 
room and spots the beds.) 



RANDY: I think I'll head on over there wit! 
you. Let me get my jacket. (He picks it u| 
near the suitcases still on the floor.) 

MATT: What you got the beds pu 
together like that for? 

RANDY: He did that before I got in hen 
last night. He thought he had a private 
room. 

MATT: Hmmm. You want me to help yoi 
take them apart? 

RANDY: Nah, he'll probably move out thi< 
afternoon. Let's hook. (They exit. Lights 
out.) 

SCENE TWO: The student cafeteria. Briar 
sits by himself at a small table set center 
stage, front. Other people occupy tables sel 
back from Brian's. Light conversation anc 
casual laughter comes from these other 
tables. Busy nursing a flat coke, Brian does 
not notice the rather unattractive coe 
enter with a malt in her hand. She is soaked 
from her own perspiration, has dirty, 
unkempt hair gathered in a sloppy pony- 
tail. Her makeup is excessive. She is 
braless under a tight halter and is in gyrr 
shorts. She saunters over to Brian's table 
and slides into the vacant chair opposite 
him. 

LANA: Hi, there. Mind if I join you? 

BRIAN: (Bothered) I guess not. 

LANA: Gawdamn it's hot outside. (She 
lights a cigarette.) You wanna smoke? 

BRIAN: I don't smoke. 

LANA: Aren't you a saint? (She ignores his 
curtness. With pride) I've been jogging. 

BRIAN: I can tell. 

LANA: Oh, do you jog? 

BRIAN: (With strained indifference) Yeah. 

ARCUS46 



la: 



la: 



la 



LA 



LA 



[f 



L 



LANA: Maybe we could go sometime. 



BRIAN: I don't dance. 



BRIAN: (Staring into his empty glass) 
Maybe. 

LANA: I'm Lana. 

BRIAN: (Slow response) Brian. 

LANA: (Pleased with her progress) Well, 
how do you like "higher education," Bry? 

BRIAN: I don't know yet. 

LANA: Oh. You just starting? 

BRIAN: Yeah. 

LANA: Poor thing. You must not know 
anybody yet. Well, I can take care of that. 

BRIAN: (Quickly) That's okay. 

LANA: What's you major, Bry? 

BRIAN? Art education. 

LANA: Wow. You're one of those kinky 
artist types, I bet. 

BRIAN: Not exactly. 

LANA: I'm in social sciences. We're kind 
of kinky, too. 

BRIAN: I can imagine. 

LANA: Say, you going to the dance 
tonight, Bry? 

BRIAN: What dance? 

LANA: It's kind of a "welcoming" dance. 
It's a great way to get to know everybody. 
(Pleadingly) The band's usually pretty 
good and everybody gets loaded and has a 
great time. Wanna go? 

BRIAN: I think I'll pass on it. 

LANA: Ah, why not? Come on, go. 
ARGUS 47 



LANA: I could teach you. (Brian makes a 
face.) 

BRIAN: (With exaggerated politeness) 
Thanks, but no thanks. I will sit this one 
out. 

LANA: Party pooper. (As an afterthought) 
Well, it would probably be a bore anyway. 
It always is. (Brightly) What about you and 
me gettin' some beers and goin' drivin' 
around? (Suggestively) I have a station 
wagon. 

BRIAN: Look, maybe some other time, like 
when I'm really-Aw, forget it! (He rises 
quickly, and leaves in a hurry. Lana is left 
angered and frustrated.) 

LANA: (After some thought) Somebody 
must want to get lucky. (Lights out.) 

SCENE THREE: Room 207. Randy and 
Monica enter. Randy is carrying two 
six-packs in a shopping bag. He sets the 
bag on the desk and removes two bottles. 

RANDY: (As he opens both bottles) Shit! I 
thought we'd never get out of there. 
Registration takes longer every semester. 

MONICA: I can't believe this heat. I'm 
soaked. (Randy brings her a beer.) It takes 
longer and gets hotter. 

RANDY: Here's something to cool you off. 

MONICA: (She sets it on the desk) Thank 
you. (She puts her arms around him and he 
does the same to her. She kisses him.) 

RANDY: (He sets his beer down on the 
desk.) You know, I could go for a massage. 
(They move to the beds. He takes off his 
shirt and lies down.) Boy, I'm beat. 
(Monica, straddling his buttocks, begins 
rubbing his shoulders.) Ah, yeah, exactly 
what I need to remove the pain of 
registration. 



MONICA: (After a pause.) I missed you 
this summer. 

RANDY: Oh, yeah? Ah, that's it ... a little 
to the right. 

MONICA: Why didn't you answer my 
letters? 

RANDY: You know I'm no good at that. 
They always sound the same: "Dear 
Monica, how are you? I am fine. How's the 
folks? How's your cat? And the couple next 
door? What's new? Nothing much new 
here. My hampster had a cardiac. Love, 
Randy." 

MONICA: I get the picture. But, you still 
could've sent a card. 

RANDY: Down a little bit ... ah, yeah. 
Right there. 

MONICA: What did you do? 

RANDY: Hmmm? 

MONICA: What did you do this summer? 

RANDY: Oh, a whole lot of nothing, just 
laid around. Went fishing, camping, you 
know. 

MONICA: (After a pause. Probing) Did you 
see J immy? 

RANDY: Yeah. He came down for a week. 

MONICA: Oh. Were your parents home? 

RANDY: C'mon 'Monica, what do you 
think? Of course not. 

MONICA. Oh. 

RANDY: He "asked" about you, okay? 

MONICA: (Anxiously) How did he react? 

RANDY: (He rolls over and pulls Monica 
down to him.) You ask too many questions. 



m 



;:\ 



MONICA: (Holding him tightly.) I'n 
feeling insecure; hold me, Randy. 

RANDY: (After a pause.) The beers an 
getting warm. 

MONICA: They'll wait. (She kisses him or 
the lips, neck, and shoulder.) 

RANDY: I thought about you. 

MONICA: Did you? 

RANDY: Often. 

MONICA: You don't act like it. (Rand\ 
begins to unbutton her blouse. The door 
opens. Brian walks in, looks over in the 
direction of the bed and stops. He is 
surprised and somewhat embarrassed.) 

BRIAN: I'm sorry. (He turns to leave.) , , 

RANDY: Hey, you don't need to leave. We> 
were just talking. (Randy gets up, followed , 
by Monica fixing her blouse. Brian, 
awkwardly returns, setting his books on the 
desk.) This is Monica. Monica, this ... I ,, 
didn't get your name. 

BRIAN: Brian. Hi. 

MONICA: Hi. (After an awkward pause) 
Well, I've got to be going. 

RANDY: (Walking her to the door) I'll call 
you. 

MONICA: Sure, (to Brian) Nice meeting 
you. (She leaves.) 

BRIAN: Same here. 

RANDY: (In the doorway) I'll talk to you 
later. (He comes back into the room, 
closing the door behind him.) 

BRIAN: Randy, I'm sorry. 

RANDY: (Fetching his beer from the 
nightstand.) That's okay. 

ARGUS 48 



r 



I^BRIAN: I didn't mean to interrupt 
anything. 

RANDY: You didn't. Want a beer? 

BRIAN: (Unsure) Sure, but what about 
dorm rules? (Randy hands him an opened 
oottle.) Thanks. 

RANDY: Dorm rules, they're broken every 
Jay and every night. There's plenty in 

| here. Help yourself when you want 

[ mother. 

I 3RIAN: Thanks. 

*ANDY: Registration's somethin' else 
Isn't it? 



wall decorations. Randy is studying at the 
desk and does not look up when Brian 
comes in. Brian dejectedly tosses his jacket 
on the back of a chair, then sits on the edge 
of the bed staring at the floor. 

RANDY: Another hot date? (No response 
from Brian.) Nah, you would've had her 
home by nine and it's well past eleven now. 
(Again, Brian remains sullen.) Okay, be 
antisocial ... 

BRIAN: (Quietly) I don't understand why 
you don't date. It seems like you'd have 
girls drooling all over you. (To himself) I 
can only get their palms wet. (To Randy) 
Yes buddy, where are all your women? 
Where is ... Monica? 



I 3RIAN: Yeah. I did get all the classes I 
I vanted. 

|IANDY: That's good. It's a bitch when you 
I lon't. 

SRIAN: Listen, I'm sorry I was such a 
urkey this morning. 



JANDY: Forget it. I probably would have 
eacted the same way. 

JRIAN: I've been doing some thinking. 

!ANDY: Yeah? 

>RIAN: Yeah. You, a ... were you planning 
n having a private room? 

ANDY: No. 

>RIAN: Well ... if it's all right with you I 
Duld just stay here. 

ANDY: Okay. (He looks toward the beds.) 
guess we better go ahead and separate 
le beds. (Lights out.) 

j:ENE FOUR: Room 207. The room in 

I'irect contrast to its sterility in the opening 

i:ene, now looks well inhabited, suggested 

/ the mementos scattered about and the 

ROUS 49 



RANDY: (Defensively) Uh, well, ... Monica 
and I had a disagreement. She'll come 
around. So what's your problem? You've 
been out every weekend for the past nine 
weeks-don't tell me you're not scoring. 

BRIAN: Aw, hell! It's not that I haven't had 
the chance, it's just ... I haven't always 
wanted to, that's all. 

RANDY: (Empathetically) Sure, hey, it 
happens all the time. (Teasing) You 
probably just need a change from the fairer 
sex to the funner ... (Randy sees that Brian 
isn't amused.) I mean you ought to go out 
with the guys now and then; make some 
friends. 

BRIAN: Yeah, make friends. Friends are 
people you're supposed to trust, be able to 
count on. I don't know, Randy. I can't even 
trust myself. I'm confused. 

RANDY: (Helpfully) Why don't you go 
home this weekend and see your old 
buddies? You haven't been home since that 
first weekend. What d'ya say? It'll be good. 



BRIAN: No, that's part of the problem. I 
never told you what happened that first 
weekend home, did I? 



RANDY: No, you didn't 

BRIAN: Well, it was kind of awkward To 
make an embarrassing story short, I found 
my best friend in the arms of our old 
physics teacher, Mr. Panz. 

RANDY: Hmm. Wow (Matter-of-factly) 
Brian , you might as well face it, some of the 
best of us . . 

E3RIAN: Have gay friends? 

RANDY: Uh, not exactly. But is that why 
you've been trying so hard for skirt? Do 
you think you are any less of a male to have 
a "gay'' friend? Does knowing an old 
friend who enjoys his own sandbox mean 
you have to kick in the castle after all those 
years of friendship? If only you knew how 
many gay friends you do have. (Randy 
starts to leave.) 

BRIAN: (Pleading) Randy. Listen That's 
just it, I don't know. I never have (He turns 
his back to Randy.) I don't even know about 
myself. I'm confused. (He turns to face 
Randy.) All those dates have been a joke. 
I'm sick of being teased in a shroud of 
cheap perfume and false expectations 
Some want it so bad, it's repulsive ... I want 
to vomit just thinking about them sal- 
ivating. And others hold it so tight they 
squeak when they walk. (Halfheartedly, he 
chuckles.) 

RANDY: (Teasing) Are you always mad 
when you're cute? 

BRIAN: (Indifferent) Stick it. (He turns to 
leave.) 



RANDY: (Aside) Love to. (Lights out.) 

SCENE FIVE: Room 207 Brian is studying 
by the light of a high intensity lamp Randy 
is sleeping. The phone rings. Brian is 
startled then he reaches for it to keep it 
from waking Randy Brian must leave his 
chair Randy stirs after Brian knocks his 



chair over. Brian answers after the second 
ring. 

BRIAN: (looking at his watch) Who is this? 
(He tilts his head back and arches his b< 
stretching.) Who? (Imitating) Jimmy the 
Grease for Rhino? Right, and I'm the tooth 
fairy. C'mon man, what d'ya want, it's 
after two Randy's friend? Oh, Jimmy 1 
Sorry, you must be really drunk Yeah, 
he's asleep .. Okay, if you say so. (Brian 
puts the receiver down and goes to Randy's 
bed ) Randy, get up! (Half awake already, 
Randy sits up, too quickly, and winces.) 
C'mon buddy! Get up and tell your weird 
friend to phone at a decent hour. 

RANDY: (Still waking) Huh? What tinu 
it? Where's the fnggin' phone? (He's up 
and to the phone now. Brian returns to his 
studies. Into the phone) This better be 
important ... Jimmy, hi guy! How's the 
Creek? (He quickly glances over at Brian.) 
Yeah, that was him. (Randy picks up the 
phone and walks to the opposite side of the 
room from Brian, and turns his back toward 
him.) A closet case, I'm still not convinced 
... When? ... Sounds great . Maybe, I'll 
ask him later ... Jealous. (Randy turns back 
into the room to replace the phone.) Yeah, 
okay.T-T-F-N. 

BRIAN: T-T-F-N? 

RANDY: (After getting two beers from the 
refrigerator.) Ta ta for now. Jimmy called 
to say hello. 

BRIAN: Really? Sweet dreams would've 
been more appropriate. 

RANDY: Sorry about that. He also phoned 
to say he is stopping by tomorrow evening 
on his way to a party down here. 

BRIAN: That's quite a drive It must be 
some party. 

RANDY: It is It's a sort of stag event some 
of his old depraved fraternity brothers uet 
together for. And their "intimate guests, 



ARCUS 50 



of course. If you can handle the sordid 
environment and perverted home movies, 
you might like it for a change of pace. 
Wanna go? 

BRIAN: Home movies? I don't know too 
much about "stag" parties, but I've about 
had it with dates for a while. Thanks 
anyway. 

RANDY: Great! Stag parties are just for 
the guys-no little boys or girls at these vile 
functions. 



BRIAN: 
"kinky." 



You almost make it sound 



RANDY: Well, everybody does get pretty 
wrecked and uninhibited. You can't help 
but come away with a different apprecia- 
tion of frats. What d'ya say? (Suggestively) 
I'll be there, you'll be in good hands. 

BRIAN: (Playing along) You'd have to get 
me pretty smashed. 

RANDY: Hmm. That can be arranged. 
(Teasing) Besides, didn't you once say 
you'd rather be queer than go out with 
some of the dogs on this campus? 

BRIAN: Probably. Figure of speech, 
though, so keep your pants on. You know, 
if I hadn't caught you with Monica that 
afternoon, I'd have my doubts about you 
now. 

RANDY: Dream on. Listen, you've been 
moping around here ever since that last hot 
date two weeks ago; let's go to a party, a 
man's party, tomorrow night. What better 
way to lose yourself than in good old 
decadent revelry? 

BRIAN: It sounds like fun, but I don't 
know. I've got a biology lab tomorrow 
night and we're supposed to circumcise 
frogs, or something. (Comtempiating.) Aw, 
what the hell. I'm sure the frog won't mind 
if I skip. Let's go. (They toast their almost 
empty bottles. Lights out.) 

ARGUS 57 



SCENE, SIX: Room 207, completely dark. 
Back lighting through the window to 
suggest moonlight. There is commotion 
backstage. 

RANDY: (Slurred) Oh my gawd, I can't find 
the key. 

BRIAN: (Slurred) I found the key, 
(singing) I've found the door (together) but 
it's too late, it's on the floor . . . (They break 
out laughing. The door crashes open and 
Brian and Randy enter, supporting each 
other. They stumble towards the bed.) 

BRIAN: (Slurred) Don't turn on the light. 

RANDY: (Slurred) Light? I didn't even 
know it was dark. (They both start laughing 
again.) 

BRIAN: What a party... What movies! 
(They fall onto a bed.) I didn't know all your 
friends were so perverted. 

RANDY: I didn't know you could dance. 

Lights fade out completely. The stage 
remains dark until Randy and Brian get 
repositioned. Lights fade in to suggest 
dawn turning into morning. The beds are 
together as in the first scene. Brian and 
Randy are under the covers, propped 
against the wall against pillows. Randy is 
smoking a cigarette. Brian is grinning, his 
hands are locked behind his head. The 
phone rings. 

BRIAN: I'll get it, Rhino. (He starts to 
throw the covers off but stops. He peers 
under them instead, smiles, and looks over 
at Randy.) Hell, you get it. I can't find my 
shorts. (They both laugh. Lights out. 
Curtain.) 




JOYCE DEASON 
Photograph 



ARGUS 52 



An Elegy 



Sony a Rozeman 



I T 1 1 was only a little over a year ago that 
I ■*» I my old dog J ack led Sarah and me to 
that grove of trees in the J acobs' pasture. It 
was on a misty Saturday morning, when the 
sun gives off just enough light to cast weird 
shadows through the trees. 

We were ten, and Sarah was my best 
friend. Not that she still isn't, but a new 
family moved in pretty close to her house 
this summer, and they have a daughter 
about our age. Anyway, last fall we were 
the only girls around here. But there were 
plenty of boys, and I guess we just had to 
be friends, to protect ourselves. 

We worshipped the boys, but we would 
never in a million years let them know that. 
They had a club called The Wildcats. 
Daddy said that they reminded him of The 
Knights of Columbus, but they read 
Spiderman comic books instead of Esquire . 
I didn't know what Esquire was, but Mama 
always laughed when he said that. I have 
two brothers, and they both belonged. I 
couldn't join because I'm a girl, but I knew 
all about it. My big brother was secretary 
and he left their rules lying around one day 
where I could read them. 

But Sarah and I were inseparable, and we 
pretty well kept ourselves busy. Mama 
called us incorrigible, but when I asked her 
what she meant, she would just smile and 
tell me I would understand some day. 
That's what they always say. You'll 
understand when you have kids of your 
own. But to me that's a long time to wait to 
understand everything. 

So since we couldn't join The Wildcats 
we spent a lot of time wandering around 
looking for excitement. You might as well 
know, Oak Grove is a small town, and 
about the most exciting thing around was 
The Wildcats' fort, but we weren't allowed 
there anyway. So we spent long hours 
playing house, with grimy faced doll babies 
ARGUS 53 



and salads of sweet clover, and when that 
got boring we transformed the pastures 
into dude ranches filled with spirited 
horses and lazy cowboys. 

But the best thing about Oak Grove is the 
trees. Sarah and me had been climbing 
since we were about eight. We always sized 
them up together, and argued a little over 
which ones to try. When we finally agreed 
on one, Sarah always tried it first. She was 
a good tree climber. I guess it was because 
she would step on those branches that I 
thought were too weak. What got to me was 
that they always held, those weak 
branches. It made me mad sometimes how 
she was always right. 

On that particular Saturday, we started 
out looking for high adventure. I guess we 
were bored. What used to be fun had 
gotten old, and we were feeling closed in. 
Saying good-bye under the streetlight 
Friday night, we agreed to meet in the 
morning. I walked home whistling under 
my breath, planning a story to tell Mama 
that would set me free for the day. 

We were supposed to meet at 9 o'clock, 
and the screen door slammed as I left the 
house to meet Sarah. It was easier than I 
expected to get away. I figured I had what 
Daddy calls that hungry look in my eye. I 
wasn't hungry, but every time he says it he 
just smiles crooked and slaps me on the 
bottom while I skip out the door. 

There was a path through the trees 
between our houses. At first it had been 
just a shade lighter than the grass, but now 
it was worn and brown, and pretty wide. 
Half running, I slipped a little on the wet 
grass and slowed to a careful walk. Bored 
with the pace, I started chanting a rhyme I 
had heard in the playground at school. 
"Cinderella dressed in yellow ..." The road 
was in sight. "Went upstairs to kiss her 
fellow ... Made a mistake and kissed a 
snake ..." Only a little ways to go. "How 
many doctors did it take?" 

At that moment a rabbit darted across 
the road and stopped my song in mid- 
verse. With my heart in my throat I 
imagined footsteps behind me, startling 
the small gentle animals from their obscure 
little shelters. The footsteps sounded 



closer The friendly morning had taken' on 
an eerie quality, and the sun slipped 
behind the only dark cloud in the sky. 

"Ginny?" I turned toward the sound, at 
once curious and afraid. Sarah stood by an 
old Pine. 

"Sarah," my heart was still pounding. "I 
didn't know it was you, I mean ..." The 
trees along the path were whispering softly 
with the cool winds from the east. Fall in 
our rural community came with infinite 
grace, and transformed the woods into a 
blaze of auburn flowers and multi-colored 
sweet gum 

My fear was gone, banished by another 
human presence. The horror of the 
unknown was replaced by a feeling of 
exhilaration. It was a feeling I had come to 
associate with Saturdays. Oak Grove, my 
parents and Mrs. Little, my less than 
favorite teacher, were forgotten, 
suspended for the space of our journey. 
Wordlessly we started down the road. The 
wind was wild, tangling our hair and 
blowing fine bits of dust against our backs. 

"I had just finished that book I found in 
Joe's room." Sarah was the first to break 
the stillness. Joe was her older brother and 
president of the Wildcats. "You have to 
read it." She stopped to push her bangs out 
of her eyes. 

"Is it a mystery, like Nancy Drew or the 
Hardy Boys?" Nancy Drew was our idol. 
Whether watching TV. in the evening or 
scanning the old Miller place on the bayou 
for clues, we fancied ourselves as closely 
resembling her. 

"No dummy, it's nothing like that. It's 
kind of like that story that Mrs. Little read 
to us last week." Sarah worshipped Mrs. 
Little. 

"The one about the old dog that died?" 
My face wrinkled in disgust. That story was 
sappy and even Sarah had cried. 

"No, the one about the boy who rides 
that bus, you know. He gets on the bus and 
goes to outer space . ' ' 

I spotted a ladybug on my old T-shirt, 
and was concentrating on picking it off 
without scaring it away. I didn't know what 
Sarah was talking about. A bus in outer 



space? The only space stories I could 
remember were the movies that came on 
after school. But I had to sneak around to 
watch them because Mama says they will 
make me have nightmares I always 
thought that was a stupid reason If she 
could hear the stories The Wildcats told us 
that Saturday they caught us spying on 
their meeting. All about men with knives in 
big cities that cut you if you didn't give 
them a dollar Those stories gave me 
nightmares for a week, those stories and 
the movie about Frankenstein V. Godzilla 

"You remember that part, Ginny, when 
he goes back home and he was trying to 
figure it out?" 

Sarah had been talking, and as usual 
when she talked about books and things, I 
wasn't paying attention. 

"You have to remember, Ginny. It was 
the best part." 

I could never understand that side of 
Sarah. She was like everybody else most of 
the time, except when she talked about 
books and Mrs. Little. She was always the 
first one to get outside for recess, and 
everyone knew she was the fastest runner 
in the fourth grade. She even hit Henry 
Cole for picking on a fat girl one day. She 
didn't like the fat girl. She just got mad 
when Henry teased her. We were best 
friends and she got mad when I didn't pay 
attention about the books, but I couldn't sit 
down long enough to read more than a 
page or two on a pretty day. Except if it is a 
Nancy Drew book, but if you can't sit down 
to read Nancy Drew, you just don't know 
what's good anyway. 

I was still concentrating on the ladybug 
when I heard Jack barking. Daddy says the 
old dog is a throwback, but he follows us 
everywhere we go and I guess that's why 
Daddy keeps him around. He's always 
worried that we're going to get lost or 
something. Anyway, I had never heard him 
bark like that before, and I got curious 
about what he was chasing. "Sarah, did 
you see which way Jack went?" She wasn't 
mad because I didn't listen to her She 
never got mad. I guess she talked for 
herself as much as for anybody else. 



ARGUS 54 



"He turned off the road a ways up 
there," she answered. I think he went 
through the fence chasing a rabbit." 

"Let's follow him. "As we looked at each 
other, our eyes met, and I caught the flash 
in Sarah's eyes. It was always like that. I 
made the suggestions and she made the 
decisions, always in the span of that split 
second when our eyes met. 

I don't know how it happened, but the 
adventures seemed to find us. Maybe we 
looked for them, but Sarah was usually off 
in the clouds and I'm not good at planning 
things. Who would have thought that Jack 
would lead us to that place in the Jacobs' 
woods? But when they found us, the 
adventures, Sarah came out of the clouds 
and I started paying attention, and it was 
the most exciting thing you could imagine. 

We could hear Jack crashing through 
the dried up Johnson grass, still barking 
crazily at his frightened prey. 

"We have to get through the fence." 
Sarah's voice vibrated with excitement. 

"You don't think it's electric, do you?" 
Joe had described the dangers of an 
electric fence to us one day, but he forgot to 
tell us how to recognize one. So I always 
wonder about strange fences. 

"I don't think so," Sarah answered 
impatiently. "There aren't any wires or 
j anything." 

"Here's a place I think we can get 
through." There was a place where a limb 
had fallen over the barbed wire, bending it 
down enough for us to step over. "You go 
first Sarah, you're taller." I could have 
said, "Sarah, vou're braver," but that's 
what is good about best friends, they don't 
laugh even if you're chicken. 

I held the fence down as she climbed 
' over. She didn't step over carefully as I did, 
watching for rusty barbs that catch on 
blouses and jeans. She always got over 
easily, without concentration, but never 
with a scratch or torn jeans. 

When I finally got over we followed 
Jack's path through the Jacobs' pasture. It 
wasn't hard. Jack is a big dog, and when he 
runs through dried Johnson grass, he cuts 
a path two feet wide at least. 

ARGUS55 



We could still hear him baying in the 
distance, and we started to run, trying to 
catch up. Sarah ran faster, but she always 
slowed down for me, no matter how bad 
she wanted to get there. 

"Do you see him, Sarah?" I was 
beginning to pant, and I knew that soon my 
side would start hurting. 

"I can see the grass moving, way over 
there past the old Jacobs' place," she 
answered. 

Jack was still barking, like I've never 
heard him howl before. Well, maybe once. 
One night a bobcat got into the chicken pen 
and Jack woke up barking at the old cat. 
Daddy says he's a natural hunting dog, and 
that is his chasing howl. "He must be 
chasing something," I thought out loud. 
"Because he sounds crazier than he ever 
did that night at the chicken pen." We kept 
running, and I thought I was going to die. I 
was running out of breath and my side had 
started to hurt. But I knew I wouldn't slow 
down unless Sarah did. 

"Cinny, I think Jack has stopped. I can 
hear him a lot better now." I could hardly 
get the breath up to answer, and the brush 
under my feet seemed to be getting thicker 
and thicker. 

"Do you want to stop, Ginny?" Sarah 
was out of breath too, but I knew she could 
keep on going. 

"No, I want to catch up with Jack." 
Jack's howls were getting louder, and if I 
would have known anything about dogs, I 
would have figured out that he has 
something backed into a corner. 

We had both slowed down a lot, but we 
were almost to the place where Jack's 
beaten down path turned off into a bunch of 
trees. The barking got a lot clearer, but it 
was pitched a little up, like Sarah's baby 
brother's crying when he got scared. 

I was staggering a little when we finally 
got to the grove of trees, but I was right 
behind Sarah when she dashed toward 
Jack, and whatever else was with him. 

"Sarah," I almost screamed it. 

"Sh, you'll scare it more." 

We had practically run into the old dog 
and his prey, and almost knocked each 
other down trying to back away. 



Jack was crouching in front of a wicked 
looking bush, thick with long thorns and 
tangled branches. He must have gotten 
into it, because he was covered with 
scratches, and he had spots of blood all 
over his nose and black coat. The raccoon 
was a big one, bigger than I have ever 
seen. It was rearing up on its hind legs, 
making angry noises and every couple of 
minutes, trying to scratch Jack again. The 
air was filled with barks and growls and the 
sounds of rustling bushes. 

"Sarah, we've got to do something." The 
'coon was mad, good and mad, and Daddy 
said once that a mad 'coon could kill a dog. 
"Sarah." She didn't answer, but just stood 
there staring at the old 'coon while he took 
a couple of more swipes at Jack. Jack was 
getting close, and I could see where his 
coat was sweat-shiny from the effort of the 
chase. If he got much closer . . . 

I don't remember to this day picking up 



that stick. When I look back on it, I can see 
in my head Sarah standing there, watching 
Jack and the 'coon, just watching. Next 
thing I knew, the racket was over, and 
Sarah was crying. She told me that I was 
still holding the stick when I walked over to 
Jack. I just sat down beside him on the 
grass, and he lay his head on my shoulder. 
The 'coon was dead, I guess I got him in the 
head. I was still for a long moment, then I 
looked up at Sarah. 

She broke the silence. "I'm sorry Ginny. I 
just couldn't move." I put my arm around 
her then, because she was still crying a 
little, and I could tell she felt bad about it. I 
whistled for Jack, and we started back 
through the trees toward home. It must 
have been almost noon, the way the sun 
was heating up the earth. Our path in the 
grass had almost disappeared, and I 
walked a little ahead of Sarah to clear the 
way home. 




ARGUS 56 




iferokea dolls ifld crippled toys 
scattered past our adolescence where 
Sunday snapshots caught the I le 
as moral proof your living 

fhan ! ♦n-enw I 
Befriend the truth we know too much 
Those Sundav lessons meant us well 
I never listened 
to you cry 

for different reasons we never f el I 
but scratched our knees 
And now our hearts as memories gHsten 
I see you ail too often 
With those closet fears and Sunday eyes 
We never shared. 
Till face to face our vision crossed 
St Chris was there to guide me 
Unattended you stumbled or> 
groping for a soul 
more in gender than in kind 
yours remamed aloof 



- %a 



« * 



JOYCE DEASON 
Photograph 



ARCUS57 



THE STERILE 

She came to slap away 
the bubbles popping loss of 
life into slivers of angry under 
the nails 

She came to our house when 
the iron broke and the cat 
screamed into a bucket 
at the sound of her name 
The sterile came quite 
sexless I opened my hands- 
there was only dust where 
the lines used to be 
Sterile I court you 

Sterile I courted you 

for years thinking your 

absence was a present and 

the payment was taken care of 

But now the cataract of goodness 

shatters into you as a bird 

of prey 

I break you sterile there is 

no pity 

I take your feathers and 

make my flight 

Jim Allen 



( FA 11 E. BURNS 
"Earth'" 
Pencil 
30.5 cm x 22.8 cm 



ARGUS 58, 



- 










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WHO'S WHO 



A native of Clinton, Miss., clinical psychology graduate student JIM ALLEN enjoys reaching 
for the stars. In the future, J im hopes to get his professors to learn his whole name, but will 
settle for his first by the end of the semester. 

Cover artist JACK WAYNE BAKER, JR., of Kalamazoo, is a music theory-composition major 
who plans eventually to work in the recording industry. His interests include music, wine and 
swiss, and Star Trek reruns. Jack feels that the most influential people of our time are "The 
Not Ready For Prime Time Players" and Mr. Bill, because of their contributions to society. 

DARRELL BARLOW plans to continue painting until he can no longer hold a brush. This 
resident of Shreveport turns to frisbees, golf, and guitar playing as a means of maintaining 
his sanity, which he hopes to do at least until graduation. 

An office administration - history major, ELAINE MARIE BASTEDO looks forward tn 
pursuing educational studies in Christian education after graduation. Mark Rothko's 
perception of Jesus Christ makes him the person Elaine most admires. 

Long-time Argus illustrator and art critic CECIL E. BURNS is a graduate art student from 
Portsmouth, Ohio. Cecil claims to be "motivated to a state of creativity by a peculiar gas, 
composed of the vapor of crushed magnolia seeds, money, and methane (swamp gas)." 

COLLEEN CLAIRE COOK is a junior journalism/general studies major from Kenner, La. Her 
interestes include the guitar and "strumming her fame with her fingers." Colleen's greatest 
ambition is to clean up her room. 

Ace girl-reporter JACKIE DEES is a junior journalism-news editorial major from Many. Her 
immediate plans include playing glow-in-the-dark frisbee and becoming a senior. 

From Monroe, JOYCE DEESON is a graduate student in student personnel services. A Kate 
Jackson look-alike, Joyce enjoys running, the guitar, and watching football games. House 
director at Sabine Dorm, she spends much of her time counseling. 

DENISE DUVALL a sophomore recreation major, draws her inspiration to write from the sea. 
Denise, a native of San Diego, Calif., enjoys surfing, swimming, and auto racing. 

ALLEN M. FORD, a senior English major, hails from Marin County, Calif. A long-time Argus 
contributor, he admires Arthur Ashe because of his comeback and would like to work on an 
underground newspaper someday. 



ARC US 60 






A proud resident of Stanley, BILLY RAY GINCLES is a senior majoring in art. Billy Ray, a poet 
and artist, was last seen in front of the Student Union lecturing on "The Esthetic Value of the 
Textbook in Today's Society." 

PAUL A. KOSTEN, a graduate experimental psychology student, is an immigrant from Cape 
May, New Jersey. He admires Ralph W. Emerson and also himself, because "He knows him 
well." Paul's future plans include eating supper. 

A native of Alexandria, ANGELA MEEKS is a journalism-broadcast major. Angela is 
presently plotting the eventual overthrow of Barbara Walters. 

A graduate student in clinical psychology, MARK M IDDLEBROOKS is a native of Orlando, 
Florida. His future plans include finishing his M.S. and obtaining a Ph.D. In his spare time, 
Mark enjoys watching the elusive mating habits of sea slugs. 

Formally a mainland Chinaman, SOO DHO NYM now finds residence in Sugra. A human 
rights activist, Soo is majoring in liberal arts and trying to learn the difference between 
martial law and martial arts. 

A senior English education major from Shreveport, SONYA ROZEMAN believes that human 
nature is the source of all literature. Sonya says that she is tired of school and spends much of 
her time procrastinating and stewing about the house. 

A senior speech major from Shreveport, JAMIE SANDERS enjoys painting, macrame, and 
reading. After graduation he plans to attend graduate school, then teach or perform. A known 
radical, Jamie feels that clowns are the only people who can get away with honesty in our 
society without getting beat up. 

Not a person to advertise that her main hobby is being a parent, SONDRA SMITH keeps 
pretty close to her home in Pineville. Sondra is currently a graduate student and would like to 
stay that way for a while. 

Inspiration to write is an outlet, "like throwing a shoe against the wall." So thinks MARJORY 
TODTENBIER who is presently boning up in the culinary arts in hopes of eventually 
establishing a classy "Greece and Spoon" restaurant. 

Veteran Argus staff member and contributor CINDY TOTTEN is a senior speech and English 
major. A native of Basile. Cindy is involved in theater and art. She also stays busy as the 
"absent" Argus editor and has recently confessed to incurable Noxzema addiction. 

From Monroe, freshman elementary education major DIANNE VON BEHRAN plans to 
become a teacher of blind children. When asked about immediate plans, she says that her 
dream is to survive the semester. 

I IM WESTMORELAND spends a lot of time in the NSU photo lab when not involved in his 
graduate studies in clinical psychology. Tim finds photography a relaxing hobby and a 
refreshing relief from the tedium of textbooks. 



UBRARY USE ONLY 






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